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Terry and Tony in South Africa. Two South Africans working from home in East London in South Africa since early 2008.

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40 Suggested Titles for Scary Short Stories

Suggested titles for scary short stories to get you thinking and writing!

Writer’s block? Do you need some new ideas for titles for short stories?

Whether a writer has writer’s block or not, a writer should always carry a pen or pencil and notepad around. Jot down any ideas that pop into your head. Look for the ideas. Be open to seeing and hearing them.

Still stuck?
Make a list – a list of anything:

How many different sounds can you hear while travelling even a short distance in the car?

Are you waiting for your child to come out of school (and it’s raining and nobody feels like getting out and chatting in the parking lot?) Make a list of the different ways the rain falls on various parts of your car.

Can you write a short story or article about anything that you saw or heard today? If you’re not already carrying a notepad around with you, wherever you go, start doing it today.

While Tony and I were waiting for my sons to finish their weekly afternoon art lesson one day, I made a list of possible titles for scary short stories.

I probably won’t write any of these short stories, as I just used the mental exercise to stimulate my imagination, and to give me other writing ideas at the same time. So, feel free to use them! Perhaps try change the titles a bit just in case more than two or three people use what I’m offering here, as is. Maybe the titles will help you think of other similar titles anyway, or even send you off in a different direction entirely. Have fun!

Getting Ideas for titles for scary short stories from photos

Getting short story title ideas from photos

Getting ideas for titles for scary short stories from photos

Simply looking at photos and pictures can help you think of some lovely scary short story titles.

Keep paper and pencil handy when browsing through magazines, and jot down your ideas.

Scary short story titles 1 to 10

My Shadow has a Strange Look about it
The Tree without Roots
The Wrong Gravestone
The Sound on the Wind
I had a bit of an Episode with a Gravestone once
Behind the Old Bookstore
The Little One they Left Behind
Dust on the Steering Wheel
Fried Fingers
Blue Toes

Scary short story titles 11 to 20

Just a Child
Give me a Date
It Exists
One Man’s Meat
A Day that wasn’t so Fine
The Rope Swing
Why she Backed Off
They saw Different Things
It was Not the Same
Exhaustion Sets In

Scary short story titles 21 to 30

The Satisfied Pig
Dished up Left-overs
The Fridge is not Telling
What we only Think
The Hidden Workshop
At the End
The Missing Pocket
Hidden in the Roots
Computer Repair Service
The Fly in the Glass

Scary short story titles 31 to 40

The Cutting Bathroom
Too Many Children
Skin and Not Bone
Furniture Polish
The Rustling Overhead
Inside the Water Tank
Was that a Pig Squealing?
Another Dead Man Found in a Hole
Just a Blade of Grass
The Freezing Fire

Want even more scary short story title ideas?
More scary short story title ideas lie within you: the 40 suggested titles for scary short stories on this page should go a long way to helping you think of at least another 120 scary short story title ideas. You should try making a list of words that each title makes you think of (at least 3 words or phrases or titles for each of the 40 titles on this page = 120 short story titles of your own), and you could also use synonyms or opposites of the words in the titles.

Involve the Family
It can be quite fun involving everyone in your exercise. Tony came up with quite a few of these titles for me while we were waiting for my sons to finish their art lesson. We were parked some distance from a truck that seemed to have farm animals on the back of it, and when Tony said “Was that a pig squealing?” I said “Where? On the back of that truck?”
“No, it’s a title suggestion,” he said.
We didn’t quite finish the list before the boys finished their art lesson, and they provided the last three. They also enjoyed reading through the list of the previous 37, and I enjoyed listening to them reading the list, and helping them when they struggled to read my handwriting.

You don’t like reading or writing scary short stories?
I’m not sure I do either, but that’s not the point.
Let’s look at the title “My Shadow has a Strange Look about it.”
This could be a funny story instead of a scary story, or even an article about anorexia.
The Wrong Gravestone? An article about choosing the most suitable one for a loved one.
The Little One they Left Behind? An article about stray dogs.
The Missing Pocket? A sewing lesson article.
Just think, make lists, and start writing!

Look at titles of other books, scary books or not, and let those titles help you think of other titles for stories that you could write yourself – scary stories or not.

Apologies to the authors if any of these suggested titles are already taken!

© Copyright Teresa Schultz 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013

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